48 hours in Malmo – 2 Day Itinerary

Beautiful cityscape with sunset over canal and skyline in Malmo Sweden

Malmo is Sweden’s southernmost city and around 700,000 people call this city home. For decades, it was overlooked as a tourist destination with most visitors opting for the more accessible cities like Stockholm and Gothenburg.

But the Oresund Bridge opened in 2000, a motorway and rail bridge connecting the Danish capital of Copenhagen with Malmo across the river. Suddenly, you could travel from Copenhagen and its international airport to Malmo in around 40 minutes. It’s grown into a popular day trip from Denmark.

But there’s so much to see and do in this city that it’s worth spending at least 48 hours in Malmo. It’s both a modern, industrial city with a harbour and skyscrapers and a historic one with many cobble-stoned squares in its Old Town.

Malmo is the perfect city break where you can spend half of your time relaxing in cafes and strolling around parks, and the other half exploring museums, churches, and other cultural activities.

This 48 hours in Malmo itinerary will show you exactly how to spend a weekend in Malmo. It covers where to stay in Malmo, how to get around and the best time to visit. This guide also includes all the top things to do in Malmo and all the best tours to book so you have a fantastic trip.

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The Best Time to Visit Malmo

Malmo has a Baltic climate, which means the city has very cold winters and mild summers. But keep in mind that Malmo is in the southern part of Sweden so the winters won’t be as cold as they are further north. January is the coldest month with lows of -1°C (30°F) and July is the warmest month with highs of 23°C (73°F). 

Malmo’s peak season is the summer, running from July – August. But Malmo isn’t as popular a summer travel destination as other European cities so it will never seem too busy.

Plus, Sweden is generally a pricier destination for most visitors anyway. So the best time to visit Malmo is the summer when you can take advantage of the long summer days.

The shoulder seasons of April – June and September – October are still good times to visit Malmo as long as you pack enough layers.

Malmo is a windy city year-round and the weather can quickly turn. Malmo also has Christmas Markets which make it an enjoyable festive city break destination.

Beautiful landscape of the river in the city of Malmo

How To Get Around Malmo

Malmo’s city centre, where most of its main attractions are, is very small. If you don’t have any special accessibility needs then you should be able to get around by walking.

Alternatively, Malmo is a very cycling-friendly city. Malmo by Bike is the city’s cycling initiative but you can also hire bikes from private tour companies for the duration of your stay.

Buses are the main form of public transport in Malmo. They do not accept payment on board so you will need to buy a ticket from a machine or ticket office or use the mobile app.

You can also use the rail network to travel to other stations in Malmo like the Malmo Hyllie Station or Station Triangeln which has a shopping mall. Malmo has both Uber and taxis with fixed rates starting at the equivalent of €6.

Where To Stay in Malmo

Because Malmo is a walkable city, staying in the heart of the Old Town close to all the main attractions is ideal. It will never seem too noisy and you won’t have to waste your precious time on public transport. 

Rut & Ragnars HostelThere aren’t many hostels in Malmo and Rut & Ragnars Hostel is a short bus ride outside of the city centre. But if you are backpacking and want to make friends while you travel, it is a great choice. This is a cosy, friendly hostel with a guest kitchen and you can book private rooms if you prefer. 

Ohboy STF HotelPrefer your own space when you travel? Ohboy STF Hotel’s suites are like small apartments. Each unit has its own outside door, bathroom, bedroom, and kitchen. Plus, they will lend you bikes to use too. These are simple but eco-friendly and convenient suites near the Turning Torso skyscraper.

Hotel Duxiana Malmo One of the best luxury hotels in Malmo is the four-star Hotel Duxiana. Room rates includes breakfast and an elegant room in a beautiful old building overlooking the canal.

Malmö, Sweden - The new skyline with Malmö Live seen behind an older office building on a bright summer day

Things To Do in Malmo

Explore Malmo Harbour and the Turning Torso

Malmo’s harbour is more industrial and modern than the rest of the city and it’s where Malmo Central Station is located.

Just outside of the station, you will spot a sculpture called ‘The Knotted Gun’, a non-violence sculpture which looks exactly how it sounds. You can also see Malmo Old Lighthouse in its red and white striped glory and the Malmo University buildings here.

But the pièce de résistance of this part of Malmo is the ‘Turning Torso’ skyscraper. Built between 2001 – 2005, this 190m tall building is the tallest in Scandinavia. It is a conference centre with a twisting exterior design that is also completely energy-efficient.

MALMO, SWEDEN - Turning Torso Building in West Harbour area in Malmo, Sweden. The tower is beside the Oredund bridge the new landmark of Malmo.

Relax at the Ribersborgs Open Air Bath and Spa

Nordic people love their spas. Specifically, they seem to love sweating in a sauna before plunging into a sub-zero and then returning back to the sauna.

If this sounds like something you might enjoy (or would at least like to try) then head to Ribersborgs Kallbadhus on Ribersborg beach.

They also have other spa treatments like massages you can book. Only the wet sauna is mixed and every other part of the spa is separated into male and female facilities though they have designated inclusive days to encourage those who identify as trans-non-binary to use the spa.

Malmo, Sweden - The historic Ribersborgs Kallbadhus, an outdoor bathing establishment, spa and restaurant

Stroll Around Kungsparken

Malmo has lots of lovely little city parks where you can sit and read a book or enjoy a picnic, but the city’s main park is Kungsparken.

It has lots of ponds and a windmill (known as Molleplatsen) surrounded by lots of manicured gardens. In the centre of Kungsparken is also where you’ll find Malmo Castle surrounded by a huge moat.

This fortress was originally built by King Christian III of Denmark in the 16th century, but now it’s a history and culture museum.

Old Windmill Slottsmollan in the Kungsparken Park Malmo Sweden

Enjoy the Swedish Tradition of Fika

Fika is a Swedish word that is difficult to translate into English. It describes the act of taking a break to socialise over a nice cup of coffee and perhaps a pastry. It’s much more than ‘elevenses’ or a simple mid-morning breather as the socialising part is crucial.

You can do the same in Malmo! Stop by a cafe like Lilla Kafferosteriet or St. Jacobs Stenugnsbageri and order a cinnamon or cardamom pastry and a nice cup of coffee. Chat with your travel partner instead of looking at your phone.

If you are travelling alone, write postcards or call a loved one. It might be difficult to strike up a conversation with the person sitting next to you as Scandinavians are famously introverted, but you can try.

Traditional Swedish cinnamon buns. A very popular snack throughout Scandinavia known as Fika. Closeup of delicious freshly baked cinnamon bun in showcase

Places To Visit in Malmo

Lilla Torg

This market square’s name means ‘little square’ and it is the heart of Malmo’s Old Town. Most of the businesses in this square are shops and restaurants housed in centuries-old buildings.

It still has cobblestones and there is an old-timey phone booth that looks quite cool. If the weather is good, eat lunch on one of the terraces here so you can ‘people watch.

Lilla Torg in Malmo in the summer. Sweden.


Northeast of Lilla Torg is Stortorget, a much bigger and more modern square. There aren’t tons of things to do here but it’s still worth walking around.

For example, you’ll find Malmo Town Hall in this square as well as some quirky old-school advertisements on the side of the pharmacy building.

MALMO, SWEDEN - panoramic banner of Stortorget square with the equestrian statue of King Karl X Gustav, Malmo, Sweden

Gustav Adolfs Torg

One of the last squares you should visit during your 48 hours in Malmo is Gustav Adolfs Torg.

This is a much larger square with high street shops and a statue of King Gustav II Adolfs which the square was named after.

There’s also another quirky statue of a mythical gryphon creature wearing a crown.

Stockholm, Sweden -  Gustav Adolfs torg square with Royal Swedish Opera

St Peter’s Church

There are many churches in Malmo, but the one you should make an effort to see is St Peter’s Church. It’s a Gothic-style red brick building dating back to the 14th and 15th centuries.

Like many churches in Nordic countries, the interior is mostly clean, bright white, and simple with ornate pulpits, stained glass windows, and beautiful frescoes in the alcoves.

St. Peters Church is an architectural landmark of Malmo Sweden

Disgusting Food Museum

Moderna Museet is a modern art museum with works by Picasso and other notable artists. In fact, you’ll find no less than seven art galleries which is quite a lot for a fairly small city.

But the Malmo museum you absolutely cannot miss is the Disgusting Food Museum. It’s just too intriguing.

The exhibit has 80 of the world’s most disgusting foods including aged whale shark from Iceland, guinea pig from Peru, and durian fruit from Thailand.

You can choose to smell or even taste some of these revolting foods. It will make you so much more appreciative of the delicious Scandinavian pastries!

Palm weevil larvae in brown plate on the table. Foods are popular in Thailand and Asia. Eating edible insects concept. Closeup

Oresundsbron Viewpoint

The Oresund Bridge is a magnificent feat of engineering. At around 8 km in length, it’s the longest bridge in Europe which is both a combined road and rail bridge.

If you didn’t cross the bridge on your way to Malmo then you should hop on the number 4 bus from Malmo Central Station down the coast to the viewpoint. It’s amazing at sunset.

View of Oresund bridge connects Malmo and Copenhagen over the Baltic sea

Tours To Do in Malmo

Canal Sightseeing Boat Tour

Since Malmo has a harbour, it has a series of canals running through the centre of the city. What better way to see the city from a different angle than to hop on a canal sightseeing tour?

You’ll be able to relax while you listen to an informative guide tell you all about the maritime history of Malmo.

Canal tours don’t run in the off-season but you probably wouldn’t want to sail around Malmo in the winter anyway. Sweden can get very cold!

Malmo, Sweden. Beautiful ship- cafe, on the canal, surrounded by beautiful architecture. Malm Sweden landmarks

Walking Tour

Malmo might be a small and flat city, but it has a lot of uneven cobble-stoned streets and roads. Taking a cycling tour would undoubtedly be super fun and Malmo has the infrastructure for it, but a walking tour is more than adequate.

You’ll be able to see the sights at a slower pace and take photographs at your leisure. You will also have a knowledgeable, local guide and you might even make friends with other travellers.

Man walking to the entry of the railway station Triangeln in Malmo, Sweden

48 Hours in Malmo

Day 1 in Malmo

Let’s start this 48 hrs in Malmo itinerary at St. Jakobs Stenugnsbageri for breakfast. You’re right in the heart of the harbour district so, after you’ve eaten, you can wander around. Spot ‘The Knotted Gun’ sculpture, the Old Malmo Lighthouse, and finally the Turning Torso building.

Next, head into the city centre and hop on the late-morning canal tour. You’ll dock back into the port by Malmo Central Station which is close to St Peter’s Church.

Continue to stroll through Stortorget and take photos of the old advertisements and the Town Hall. Wander further south to Lilla Torg and stop at one of the restaurants near the square for lunch. Wolski’s is a favourite.

In the afternoon, head to Ribersborgs Kallbadhus for a relaxing afternoon. You should aim to spend a few hours here indulging in spa treatments, saunas and swimming in the sea.

After you’re done, you should take a stroll along the rest of the beach, especially if you’re visiting in summer. If you have the cash to splash, eat a traditional Scandinavian dinner at Atmosfar or Kockeriet.

gun sculpture, designed by Carl Fredrik Reuterswaerd. Its one of 3 existing copies, another in NYC and one in Malmo

Day 2 in Malmo

Begin your second day in Malmo with brunch at Farm2Table Davidshall. Head to Kungsparken where you can stroll through the gardens and explore Malmo Castle. You’re not too far away from Lilla Kafferosteriet cafe if you want to slow down and enjoy fika before moving on to another activity.

Walk through Gustav Adolfs Torg before entering The Disgusting Food Museum. It might not be the best activity to do right before lunch, but when is a good time?

Taste as many revolting delicacies as you dare before seeking respite in Korvhuset, one of the best places to get a hotdog in Malmo. Hotdogs are the top Scandinavian street food, so you have to try at least one during your trip. And yes, they make vegan hotdogs too.

It will take about an hour to travel to the Oresund Viewpoint by bus which will take up the rest of your afternoon. If you’re not interested in seeing the bridge then you can always visit one of the many art museums in Malmo instead. 

After you’ve finished feeling awe-inspired by the magnificence of the bridge, head back to the city centre for a delicious dinner.

Malmo is a multicultural city with restaurants representing dozens of cuisines. Laziza is a fantastic Lebanese restaurant and Ostergatan No. 25 serves delicious Italian food.

Slottsparken park pond and city library buildings, Malmo, Sweden

Recommended tours in Malmo

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48 hours in Malmo - 2 Day Itinerary
48 hours in Malmo - 2 Day Itinerary
48 hours in Malmo - 2 Day Itinerary


  • Samantha King

    Sam, a seasoned traveler across four continents and 49 countries, is a leading authority in travel planning. Her website, Travelling King, offers tailored itineraries and expert guides for seamless trips. Sam's expertise in luxury travel, fast travel, and destination guides keeps her at the forefront of the travel community.

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